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Mississauga bus rapid transit project moves forward

The Mississauga bus rapid transit (BRT) project moved forward today, Wednesday, February 20, when representatives of the Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario, the City of Mississauga and GO Transit officially signed contribution agreements.

The contribution agreements result from the Government of Canada’s long-term transportation action plan, FLOW. FLOW is a Government initiative to reduce traffic congestion and reduce greenhouse gas emissions throughout the Greater Toronto Area. The Government expects that FLOW will help create “a seamless system across the GTA — keeping traffic and goods FLOWing in Canada’s largest metropolitan area.”

The federal government is contributing $83 million to the City of Mississauga and GO Transit for the BRT. The funding comes from the Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund, which, according to the Government’s news release, “supports large-scale strategic infrastructure projects that improve quality of life and furthers economic growth”.

Other FLOW transit projects include constructing a bus rapid transit system along Brampton’s key transportation corridors, extending the Yonge-University-Spadina subway line to the Vaughan Corporate Centre, enhancing the York Region VIVA rapid transit system and funding a long-term transit strategy in the Regional Municipality of Durham.

The Province of Ontario is contributing $113 million to the Mississauga BRT. That includes $65 million to Mississauga, which it already disbursed in 2006 to support this project, and an additional $48 million to GO Transit for its portion of the project.

The City of Mississauga and GO Transit will be responsible for the remainder of the project costs. The project will likely be complete by 2012.

The Government of Canada and Province of Ontario have recently signed contribution agreements for FLOW projects with the City of Brampton and the Region of Durham.

The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance and Minister responsible for the Greater Toronto Area, on behalf of the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, the Honourable Jim Bradley, Ontario Minister of Transportation, Her Worship Hazel McCallion, Mayor of Mississauga, and Peter Smith, Chairman of GO Transit, signed the agreements at a ceremony at the Mississauga Transit garage.